Sunday, April 26, 2009

'shopping is not a dirty word

'shopping Manhattan, originally uploaded by iHeartDimSum.

I used to think that Photoshop was for cheaters... that somehow the use of Photoshop was akin to a 'roid using Tour de France winner - a way of turning uninteresting photos into something they were not. But the more I play with it, the less guilty I feel about using it. While I still believe that getting your shot correct in camera in the first place is the way to go, there's room for play in Photoshop to add some fun to your workflow, so long as you don't go overboard with the post processing.

The above shot was done using a panorama of the NY skyline taken from Ellis Island - tutorial courtesy of Photojojo.

Photo of Anita aping Lady Liberty during our visit to New York. Border and faux cross process done in CS4.

From the upper terrace of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, England. Fake Tilt and Shift effect done in CS4. I love how the T/S effect makes things look like miniatures.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Shoot Wide Open

A few friends of mine have started an f/1.8 photoblog, dedicated to all of us bokeh whores. Check it out.

And, just to prove my point about us visiting Chinatown everywhere we go (ala my previous post), here's a shot of us searching out the motherland in London, England.


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I <3 NY

Our first trip to New York City was fairly successful... although I'm still not quite sure why they call it the Big Apple - seems a bit of a misnomer. I was half expecting some kind of giant landmark in the shape of said fruit that could be seen from space, or at least an oversized tetrabrik Sun-Rype Apple Juice box plunked right in amidst the skyscrapers of the New York skyline. It'd be a brilliant marketing campaign now that I think of it - putting up a big print of your juice box label on the front facade of a skyscraper in the Big Apple? Excuse me, while I phone up Sun-Rype to make my pitch.

Anyways, getting back on track here - the trip was great. Of course our first order of business when we landed on Friday night was to hit up Chinatown. Who travels to world class foreign cities to see Chinatown? Apparently, us. {I wonder if we'll find one in Tokyo next month?} Next up, Times Square, which, really isn't a square at all. In fact, it's more like a number sign, or the lb. symbol on your touch tone dial. Misnomer # 2. Or should I say Misnomer Square 2. It reminded me very much of Picadilly Circus - which at least bears some resemblance to its moniker - a carnal circus of seizure inducing flashing lights, broadway billboards, and chaotic tourist pedestrian traffic.

Over the next few days, we saw all the typical tourist sites, ate some fantastic latin American cuisine, hit up the Giant Robot store (yes, that Asian American Culture magazine), had a ridiculously overpriced Japanese lunch (which in retrospect seems even more retarded considering we're going to Japan in 2 weeks), and got threatened by a decidely high and hostile African American hobo at the Fulton-Broadway subway station. Mission accomplished.

My feet logged what felt like 3000 miles of walking (they were howling at me by the last day), but I finally took control of my photographic life - after two years of dabbling in photography, I shot in full manual for the entire trip. No more lazy Aperture Priority. And I feel like I ended up with some of my best work yet. Two of these made Flickr's Explore in the past week (which, I understand doesn't actually mean squat in real life, but still it's an ego boost). I haven't processed all the images yet, but here are a sampling of a few highlights. More to come. Check my Flickr stream for a more up to date look.


Ground Zero

Passing By

Self Portrait Sunday (3)

This way to Brooklyn

This way to Manhattan

1. This way to Brooklyn, 2. Passing By, 3. Weathered, 4. Inversed, 5. Sprocket Panorama

Friday, April 10, 2009

Wanderlust... sated


T-minus 3 hours to departure. I've been dying of boredom for a while now. A couple weeks ago, Anita and I finally did something spontaneous, and decided we were going to fly to New York for Easter (Anita tends to plan for trips MONTHS in advance, so this is really something). Of course, her face is still swollen from an ill advised wisdom tooth removal last weekend (can you hear me thinking, I TOLD YOU SO!), and I mysteriously came down with some kind of stomach illness after going for dinner with a buddy. Oh well... we're going to Manhattan!

See ya later, suckas!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Crackling embers
Originally uploaded by iHeartDimSum
This blog has become way too serious for my tastes. No wonder no one's reading it. I feel like now that I'm married, getting home cooked meals from the in-laws, not having to do my own laundry, and generally having nothing resembling even a hint of adult responsibility has taken the edge away... snuffed my mojo... robbed me of my rant-astic-ness (?)... Seriously, I've lost the anger, the sarcasm, the cynicism (okay, maybe not that one) of yesteryear. I need something to get ANGRY about. NEEED. That's right, with 3 E's. That's extra needy.

Excuse me, I think I have a Fox news marathon to watch.